Non-Salary Employment Negotiation Topics

career advice career services news job + productivity advice Nov 23, 2023

Negotiating a salary package can be a complex dance, often focused intently on the dollar figure that will appear on one's paycheck. However, astute professionals know that compensation extends far beyond base salary. In the throes of salary discussions, it's easy to overlook the myriad of other benefits that can significantly enhance one's total employment package. These are the non-salary points, the often-forgotten aspects that can be just as crucial as the salary itself.

Non-Salary Points: The Forgotten Frontier in Salary Negotiations

When an employer cannot budge on salary, it's time to turn the conversation to non-salary points that can offer substantial value. Here's a guide to what you should be asking for:

  • Starting Bonuses: A lump sum offered when you sign your employment contract can help bridge the gap if the offered salary is lower than expected.
  • Retention Bonuses: These bonuses are designed to keep employees at a company for a set period. Discussing retention bonuses can show your commitment to staying long-term while also securing additional compensation.
  • Performance Bonuses: Tying bonuses to performance metrics can be a win-win, incentivizing excellence and potentially increasing your take-home pay.
  • Equity: In startups or publicly-traded companies, equity or stock options can be a golden ticket, sometimes outweighing the value of a higher salary in the long run.
  • Paid Time Off (PTO): Negotiating additional days off can give you the work-life balance you crave, and time is a currency in itself.
  • Job Title: Sometimes, a better title can position you for future career advancement and salary increases.
  • Work From Home: The flexibility to work from home can save you on commuting costs and time, effectively giving you a raise by reducing expenses.
  • Office Supply Stipend: If you're working remotely or have a home office, a stipend to purchase necessary equipment can be a significant perk.
  • Commuting or Parking Costs: These are everyday expenses that can add up, and having them covered or subsidized by your employer can represent substantial savings.
  • Relocation Costs: If the job requires you to move, having your employer cover the costs can alleviate the financial burden of relocation.
  • Continuing Education: In a rapidly evolving job market, opportunities for professional development can keep your skills sharp and your marketability high.
  • Project Placement: Having a say in the projects you take on can ensure you're working on assignments that are meaningful to you and can help you grow professionally.
  • Start Date: Negotiating a start date that suits you better can give you time to rest and recharge between jobs, making you more productive when you start.

These non-salary points are not just fringe benefits; they are crucial components of a comprehensive compensation package. During your next salary negotiation, don’t forget to bring these points to the table. They could just be the difference between an acceptable offer and your dream job conditions. Remember, your value as an employee is not solely reflected in your salary—it's the whole package that counts.

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